The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Entries from December 2018

The view from somewhere

December 31st, 2018 · No Comments

“Numerical precision is the very soul of science, and its attainment affords the best, perhaps, the only criterion of the truth of theories and the correctness of experiments.” – D’Arcy Wentworth Thompson, On Growth and Form

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Tags: Open Science Collaboration

Watching Paint Dry

December 30th, 2018 · No Comments

“I have come to think that boredom is the worst of all a tramp’s evils, worse than hunger and discomfort, worse even than the constant feeling of being socially disgraced. It is a silly piece of cruelty to confine an ignorant man all day with nothing to do; it is like chaining a dog in […]

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Tags: Economics · George Orwell · Lit & Crit · Politics & Law

Assorted sizes and flavors

December 29th, 2018 · No Comments

“After breakfast we had to undress again for the medical inspection, which is a precaution against smallpox. It was three quarters of an hour before the doctor arrived, and one had time now to look about him and see what manner of men we were. It was an instructive sight. We stood shivering naked to […]

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Tags: George Orwell · Lit & Crit

It was nice work while we could get it

December 28th, 2018 · No Comments

“Citizens are those who, at the very heart of the general conflagration of the social sphere, persist in proclaiming their abstract participation in a society that now only exists negatively, through the terror it exercises over everything that threatens to abandon it, and in so doing, to survive it. The accidents and the rationality that […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Is it bleeding, screaming, or burning

December 27th, 2018 · No Comments

“Under Empire, the very persistence of the formal trappings of the state is part of the strategic maneuvering that renders it obsolete. Insofar as Empire is unable to recognize an enemy, an alterity, an ethical difference, it cannot recognize the war conditions it has created. There will therefor be no state of exception as such […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

We have met the enemy, and they are us

December 26th, 2018 · No Comments

“Imperial war has neither a beginning nor an end, it is a permanent process of pacification. The essential aspects of its methods and principle have been known for fifty years. They were developed in the wars of decolonization during which the oppressive state apparatus underwent a decisive change. From then on the enemy was no […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · The Forever War · Tiqqun

Going rogue

December 25th, 2018 · No Comments

“Empire’s reconfiguration of hostilities has largely gone unnoticed. It has gone unnoticed because it first appeared outside metropolises, in former colonies. The prohibition on war—a simple declaration with the League of Nations that became actual with the invention of nuclear weapons—produced a decisive transformation of war . . . . Since all war between states […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

It’s just a flesh wound

December 24th, 2018 · No Comments

“The warrior is not a figure of plenitude, and certainly not of virile plenitude. The warrior is a figure of amputation. The warrior is a being who feels he exists only through combat, through confrontation with the Other, a being who is unable to obtain for himself the feeling of existing. In the end, nothing […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Politics & Law · Tiqqun

It’s survival in the city, when your back’s against the wall

December 23rd, 2018 · No Comments

“Every war machine is by nature a society, a society without a state; but under Empire, given its obsidional status, another determination has to be added. It is a society of a particular kind: a warrior society. Although each existence is at its core essentially a war and each will know how to engage in […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Sanding and filling

December 22nd, 2018 · No Comments

“Empire is well-armed to fight the two types of secession it recognizes: secession ‘from above’ through golden ghettos—the secession, for example, of global finance from the ‘real economy’ or of the imperial hyperbourgeoisie from the rest of the biolpolitical fabric—and secession ‘from below’ through ‘no-go areas’—housing projects, inner cities, and shanty-towns. Whenever one or the […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Rethinking it over

December 21st, 2018 · No Comments

“Rethought as a totalizing system (differentiated into private, interdependent, functional subsystems or fields of autonomous decision-making and auto-regulating capacity), that is, as a modular-corporate system, the computerized metropolis appears as a vast, barely disguised penal colony.” – Renato Curcio and Alberto Franceschini, Gocce di sole nelle cità degli spettri (translated and quoted in Tiqqun, This […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Just say yes

December 20th, 2018 · No Comments

“Dressing up what is hostile to the system of representation in the guise of the ‘negative,’ ‘protest,’ the ‘rebel,’ is simply a tactic that the system uses to bring within its plane of inconsistency the positivity it lacks—even at the risk of confrontation. The cardinal error of all subversion therefore lies in the obsession with […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

One world

December 19th, 2018 · No Comments

“Through arrogance, ‘international police’ operations, and communiqués declaring permanent victory, a world presented as the only world possible, as the crowning achievement of civilization, has finally been made thoroughly abominable. A world which believed it had completely insulated itself has discovered evil at its core, among its children. A world which celebrated a common new […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Now get back to work

December 18th, 2018 · No Comments

“Empire is when the means of production have become the means of control and the means of control the means of production. Empire signifies that henceforth the political moment dominates the economic moment. And the general strike is powerless against it. What must be opposed to Empire is the human strike. Which never attacks the […]

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Tags: Economics · Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Peekaboo, it sees you

December 17th, 2018 · No Comments

“Imperial sovereignty means that no point of space or time and no element of the biopolitical tissue is safe from intervention. The electronic archiving of the world, generalized traceability, the fact that the means of production are becoming just as much a means of control, the reduction of the juridical edifice to a mere weapon […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Let’s you and him fight

December 16th, 2018 · No Comments

“Empire perceives civil war neither as an affront to its majesty nor as a challenge to its omnipotence, but simply as a risk. This explains the preventive counter-revolution that Empire continues to wage against anyone who might puncture holes in the biopolitical continuum. Unlike the modern State, Empire does not deny the existence of civil […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

A passive aggression

December 15th, 2018 · No Comments

“There is something militant about deconstruction, a militancy of absence, an offensive retreat into the closed but indefinitely recombinable world of significations. Indeed, beneath an appearance of complacency, deconstruction has a very specific political function. It tries to pass off anything that violently opposes Empire as barbaric, it deems mystical anyone who takes his own […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Politics & Law · Tiqqun

The stasis of the unscrewed

December 14th, 2018 · No Comments

“Deconstruction’s task is, apparently, to produce fastidious commentaries targeting anything that, in the history of thought, has carried any intense charge. This new form of policing that pretends to be a simple extension of literary criticism beyond its date of expiration is, in fact, quite effective in its own domain. It won’t be long before […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · Tiqqun

Know your rights

December 13th, 2018 · No Comments

“It is the right of one placed under arrest to submit to custody and to reserve his defenses for the neutral tribunals erected by the law for the purpose of judging his case. An inference of probable cause from a failure to engage in discussion of the merits of the charge with arresting officers is […]

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Tags: Politics & Law

It’s military, it’s industrial, and it’s simple

December 12th, 2018 · No Comments

“The law should be used as just another weapon in the government’s arsenal, and in this case it becomes little more than a propaganda cover for the disposal of unwanted members of the public. For this to happen efficiently, the activities of the legal services have to be tied into the war effort in as […]

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Tags: Politics & Law

What it is, man

December 11th, 2018 · No Comments

“The logic of the modern State is a logic of the Law and the Institution. Institutions and the Law are deterritorialized and, in principle, abstract. In this way, they distinguish themselves from the customs they replace, customs which are always local, ethically permeated, and always open to existential contestation. Institutions and the Law loom over […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Listen up

December 10th, 2018 · No Comments

“We who write, we who bear witness, must often hear our hearts cry out against us, complaining because of their hidden things.” – William Butler Yeats, “Magic”

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William Butler Yeats

The Law laws

December 9th, 2018 · No Comments

The Law laws “The Law sets up divisions and institutes distinctions, it circumscribes what defies it and recognizes an orderly world to which it gives both form and duration. The Law ceaselessly names and enumerates what it outlaws. The Law says its outside. The inaugural gesture of the Law is to exclude, and first of […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Tamp it down

December 8th, 2018 · No Comments

“A man of society, a drawing-room man who can make himself agreeable to women when he pays a call, is always a man whose principal concern is to suppress any arresting spontaneity, not to let his own personality show through. For it is a man’s own personality that people find irritating. People like to meet […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit

As it is written, so let it be done

December 7th, 2018 · No Comments

“I would rather be owned than forgotten. I would rather be used than thrown away.” – Aimee Parkison, “Girl in Glass”

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Tags: Lit & Crit

The great democratizer

December 6th, 2018 · No Comments

“There is no visible Outside any more—nothing like a pure Nature, the Madness of the classical age, the Great Crime of the classical age, or the Great classical Proletariat with its actually-existing Homeland of Justice and Liberty. These are all gone, mostly because they have lost their imaginary force of attraction. The outside is now […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

Pennies for Mr. Two-Scoops

December 5th, 2018 · No Comments

“At first glance, Empire seems to be a parodic recollection of the entire, frozen history of a ‘civilization.’ And this impression has a certain intuitive correctness. Empire is in fact civilization’s last stop before it reaches the end of its line, the final agony in which it sees its life pass before its eyes.” – […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun

And not to kill each other

December 4th, 2018 · No Comments

“Without a minimum of common assurances, it is not possible for men to live together in society. If they are not to massacre each other, men must agree on a certain number of fundamental questions: what is good, what evil; what is true, what false; what is beautiful, what ugly.” – Ignazio Silone, “Ferrero and […]

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Tags: Politics & Law

In which case I might be wealthy

December 3rd, 2018 · No Comments

“I would not give twopence for a Christian who does not commemorate Christ’s birth every day and keep sober over it.” – George Bernard Shaw, “Chesterton on Shaw”

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Tags: Economics · George Bernard Shaw · Lit & Crit

From the autosarcophagous

December 2nd, 2018 · No Comments

“The various bourgeois revolutions never tampered with the principle of personal sovereignty, insofar as an assembly or leader, elected directly or indirectly, never deviated from the idea of a possible representation of the social totality, i.e. of society as a totality. As a result, the passage from the absolutist State to the liberal State only […]

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Tags: Politics & Law · Tiqqun